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Luke Thompson November 11, 2021 3 min read
Over $5B Collected in Sports Wagers from Legal Market in US
What a month it has been for sportsbooks as September brought in a total of $5.2 billion worth of wagers in a single month. The data, provided by analytics firm and affiliate media PlayUSA.com taps into the overall strength of the sports gambling market in the US, helping paint the full picture.
While sports betting started slowly in 2018, with only a few states making the move, a torrent of legalization followed throughout 2019 and the years to come, leading to the current results, which put the industry on track to generate close to $50 billion in wagers for 2021.
This comes in stark contrast with the offshore betting market which is estimated to be worth $150 billion and is slowly giving in to the push of regulated operators. Part of the uptick in activity is owing to the availability of sports events, with the NFL season and college football now available in numerous states that previously did not authorize gambling.
Analyst Dustin Gouker, who works for PlayUSA, reported a strong interest in the numbers across the board. He pointed out that states such as Michigan and Virginia had had their opportunity to bet on regular NFL season games from start for the first time, using mobile and interactive wagering options.
Mature Markets Still Have Room to Grow
Yet, this didn’t come at the cost of a slowdown in established markets. Nevada and New Jersey, two of the inaugural sports betting states in the country, have continued to show strength and post strong numbers, too.
While the legalization of a mobile betting option in New York will surely bite into the numbers of the Garden State for the Super Bowl, most likely, the trend is for more punters to be picking regulated options in their states over what is available offshore it seems.
Gouker didn’t offer a breakdown into the split between offshore and onshore betting, focusing on the collected numbers for the legal market instead. The results were announced after Illinois’ report, which is customarily published later, said that the state had collected $596.5 million in total wagers for the month.
Previously, the United States saw a comparable amount of wagers placed back in March, when the total reached $4.6 billion, no doubt is driven by March Madness. Comparing these numbers year-over-year, sportsbooks in September 2021 posted an 80.6% increase. In 2020, sportsbooks had collected $2.9 billion.
States Set Their Records as Well
Individual states have been bringing in steady records. New Jersey has crossed the $1-billion threshold with $1.01 billion in total handle, which is a state record. The Garden State surpassed Nevada which too set a new record in September with $786.7 million. Colorado, Michigan, and Indiana all posted new highs of their own, boosted by mobile betting.
The return of the NBA, the launch of the NHL, and the ongoing NFL season, paired with the availability of new betting venues, have all contributed to a record-setting month for US sports gambling.